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Rogue builder ordered to repay thousands of pounds

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A rogue builder has been ordered to repay thousands of pounds in compensation after pleading guilting to carrying out shoddy building work.

Dudley Council’s trading standards brought a case to Wolverhampton Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday February 23 against Paul Tompkinson of Corbett Road in Brierley Hill.

Tompkinson had approached the homeowners of a property after viewing an approved online planning application for an extension to their home.

Tompkinson claimed in writing that he had more than 40 years of experience, was winner of the Baggeridge Brickwork Prize and was City and Guilds qualified

The homeowners, having believed he was a competent builder, instructed him to carry out the work.

But Tompkinson failed to follow plans and comply with British Standards in some areas of the build.

He also failed in his legal duty to inform the council’s building control when stages of the project had been completed, which they should have been able to inspect.

Once the project was complete and building control were able to visit the property, they found a number of faults.

The case was referred to trading standards and an independent chartered surveyor was instructed to assess the work.

The surveyor concluded that the work was below standard, it didn’t comply with the plans and it would costs in excess of £27,000 to put it right.

Tompkinson had been paid £32,000 for the job and the homeowners have since had to pay £31,000 for the work to be rectified.

Tompkinson pleaded guilty to the Professional Diligence offence under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

He was ordered to pay the complainants £31,000 in compensation, backed by a collection order and to pay the council costs of more than £7,000.

Councillor Nicolas Barlow, cabinet member responsible for trading standards, said:

Following an investigation it came to light that Mr Tompkinson didn’t have the qualifications he’d claimed, only a qualification for bricklaying.
He used false information to dupe the homeowners into allowing him to build their extension and he was clearly not up to the job.
I welcome the court’s decision in ordering him to repay every penny to the complainants but that doesn’t take away the distress he will have caused them due to his incompetence.
We have the best interests of our residents in mind and will not hesitate to pursue rogue traders through the court system. They will not get away with shoddy work at the expense of our residents.

The council offers a list of approved trades people to carry out maintenance work. Visit www.dudley.gov.uk and search fix-a-home.

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